Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Stanford Peep Experiment

The boys were up bright and early, searching for their Easter baskets.  E.B. is pretty conservative with the candy at this house, preferring to leave Legos and baseballs.  But he's not an Easter candy grinch either, so there were some jelly beans and Peeps to be found.  You've no doubt heard of the famous marshmallow test, and if Peeps count as marshmallows, Matthew is in big trouble. 

As if the boys were lacking for sugar, I made a batch of Vegan YumYum cinnamon buns for breakfast which were 1) delicious and 2) served to demonstrate that I, too, am lacking in self-control.

Now the boys are out in the pouring rain playing baseball with their new bat and balls and their very kind father.  It's been raining pretty much for forever here and the forecast suggests that the rain will stop never.  The other day, Matthew asked, "Who makes the rain?"

To which Cameron promptly replied, "Depends who you ask.  The Greeks would say Zeus."

Zeus really has it out for us, but as Matthew says, "Nothing will stop me from playing baseball.  Not rain.  Not even if a baseball bonks me on the head!"

I'm not much for baseball, much less baseballs bonking me on the head in the rain, so instead I'm inside, prepping the roasted asparagus lasagna for our Easter dinner.  And maybe sneaking a Peep when no one is looking. 

Monday, April 18, 2011

Unfair advantage

Matthew:  Hey Cameron!  Let's play soccer outside!
Cameron:  No, let's play Star Wars outside!
Cameron and Matthew, in unison:  NOOOO!  BUT I WANNA . . .
Cameron:  Wait!  What if we play Star Wars soccer?
Matthew:  Oh!  OK!
Cameron:  BUT, you are not allowed to use The Force.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Cameron has always had a penchant for collecting things, from "fossils" (aka, a few fossils and a whole lot of concrete chunks) to bottle caps (a bit embarassing at a party when he's asking every grownup if he can have the top off their beer). 

Today, Matthew and I were riding bikes to the library when he brought his trike to a screeching halt.  "Dandelions!" he shouted.

"Yes, dandelions," I said.  "A big field full of dandelions!"

"Can we pick them?" he asked.

"Well, how about you pick one?"

"Nooooo, Mommy.  I neeeeed the dandelions.  A looooot of the dandelions.  For my collection."

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

April Fools 2011

A few tips for a really convincing April Fool's joke involving food: 

1. Make sure your intended victim sees you making a REAL version of the food you will be tricking him with.

2. Play your trick on April 2.

The boys and I conspired, yet again, to fool David.  This year, it was a sponge cake.  We spent the afternoon baking and making frosting.
 Then, we frosted and decorated a REAL SPONGE!!!
Super funny, people, super funny.

Sadly, these will be the last photos I post for a while.  Our camera bit the dust and for a brief moment I thought, "Oooh!  Maybe this is an opportunity to upgrade to one of those fancy DSLR cameras everyone seems to have these days!"  Then I looked at the price of those cameras and thought, "Or maybe I'll just settle for the mediocre photos my cell phone takes."  

In the car

This morning in the car, the boys were playing the syllable game.  'Cause that's how we roll.

"Matthew, how many syllables in 'neighbor?'" said Cameron.

"Nay *clap* burr *clap*  Two!" answered Matthew.

"Right!  How many syllables in 'insect?'"

"In *clap* sect *clap* Tttt.  Tttt.  Hey!  There's a T in insect!"

At this point, I interjected, "There is a T in insect!"

"Yep," replied Matthew.  "Aaaand, insects don't have a backbone but we do."

"Matthew!" said Cameron. "Are you learning about insects right now?"

"Uh huh."

"What insects have you learned about?  Can you tell me some insects?" asked Cameron.

"Well," said Matthew authoritatively, "there are blue insects.  And there are some green insects . . . "

Friday, April 8, 2011

I totally knew what a biome was.

When I picked Cameron up from school on Tuesday, I asked him how his day was.  "IT WAS GREAT!!!" he said.

Cameron rarely says he had a bad day at school, but this was a more enthusiastic response than usual.

"What was so great about it?" I asked.

"Well, I spent all afternoon working with my friend on a diorama!  It's a pop-up diorama of the biomes of Africa.  Oh!  And I need to bring in some cardboard from home, because we want to make it stand up more.  Oh!  And?  Guess what?  I drew a bunch of animals for the diorama and tomorrow we're going to do even more!"

At this point I had to interrupt to ask was a biome was, which led to Cameron giving me that pitying look that makes me feel hopelessly clueless.  "Uh, Mom?  A biome?  You know, like in Africa the biomes are grassland, desert and rainforest?"

"Right.  Of course.  I was just making sure you knew what a biome was," I fibbbed.  "So, is the diorama one of your weekly assignments?"

"No! It was free choice!"

How cool is it, first of all, that Cameron chooses his own work and, second of all, that he chooses to make a diorama of African biomes???

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Guidance counselor

Tonight, when it was time to come in from an evening spent playing basketball, baseball, soccer and lawn jarts, Matthew was NOT happy.  "I want to play outside," he wailed.  And then, for emphasis, he hit me.

That quickly ended any hope he may have had of playing outside a bit longer.  Inside we went, him screaming, "I want to play outside," and me saying, "Hitting doesn't get you what you want."  I suggested to Matthew that perhaps he could use some time alone to calm down and he retreated to the bedroom, still sobbing.  Cameron followed him.

A few minutes later, Matthew walked into the kitchen, took a deep breath and said, "Mommy, I am sorry for my behavior."

"Thank you for saying sorry," I answered.  "I know you were upset because you wanted to play outside, but it hurts me when you hit."

"I just really want to play outside . . . " he ventured.

"I know," I replied, "but it's time for our snack and then bed."

Calmly, Matthew turned and walked a few steps to Cameron.  "Cameron," he whispered, "it's not working." 

Cameron leaned down and whispered in Matthew's ear, then Matthew turned to me and held his arms out for a hug.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Must've been the rainbow chard

When Cameron was potty training, I bought him a doll with a potty and  . . . the appropriate parts for potty usage.  We named him Paul, because he was wearing a little shirt that said "Paul."  We spent a morning "teaching" Paul to use the potty and, next thing you know, Cameron was potty trained.

So when Matthew seemed to be ready, I decided to get him a similar doll.  It turns out there is not a huge selection of anatomically correct black dolls and I ended up buying what is possibly the ugliest doll EVER.  We named him Sammy, although he was not wearing a shirt with his name on it.

Matthew greatly enjoyed potty training Sammy, although he was not quite as enthusiastic as Cameron had been about giving the ol' potty a try himself.

That was months ago, but recently Matthew found Paul and Sammy.  He excitedly set them up with their potty in the bathroom and then said, "Mommy?  Remember when Sammy pooped in the potty?  How did he do that?"

"Well," I confessed, "Sammy doesn't really go potty.  I put a little bit of playdough in Sammy's potty so it would look like he went potty."

"Ohhhhh," said Matthew.

Later in the day, I found this scene.